Tech

Amazon Reportedly Cooking Up 'Vesta' Alexa Home Robot And Premium Echo Speaker

Amazon Reportedly Cooking Up 'Vesta' Alexa Home Robot And Premium Echo Speaker

Prototypes of the device are said to be wider than the newest Echo, which allows Amazon to pack additional components within the speaker, including up to four tweeters.

Despite the ramp up in efforts to bring the robot to fruition, it's unclear whether Vesta -which is named for the Roman goddess for the home and domestic life - will actually make it to Amazon's product lineup. Google commands 31% of the market. Amazon may have a much more interesting announcement up its sleeve in the near future, if a new report holds any water. The company is continuing work on an Alexa-enabled home robot called "Vesta" internally, Bloomberg also reported. Individuals acquainted with the task guessed a year ago that the Vesta could be a kind of portable Alexa, going with clients in parts of their home where they don't have Echo gadgets. The robot isn't ready for mass production yet.

The Seattle-based company typically rolls out a slew of devices in the fall, but sometimes scatters one-off product launches throughout the year. Over a quarter of the adult US population now owns a smart speaker, with 61 percent using some kind of Amazon Echo device, according to a January 2019 industry survey. At the very least, that signals Amazon hasn't given up on a home robot making it to market.

Amazon is also reportedly experimenting with other new form factors for its Alexa assistant beyond the Echo and the other devices now available. Although the HomePod hasn't been quite as strong of a competitor as Apple hoped it would be, Amazon undoubtedly wants to reclaim any lost market share.

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Amazon may have essentially invented the modern smart speaker, but the company has nearly always targeted the low-end of the market.

A prototype of the robot, codenamed "Vesta", is about "waist-high", can be controlled by voice and is capable of moving around on its own using built-in cameras, according to the report. The machine can be summoned by voice.

The company also seems to be working on Alexa-powered earphones to compete Airpods and a voice-activated wearable device that can recognize human emotions.